What exactly is cholesterol? And what is a good cholesterol level? All of the cells in your body contain cholesterol, which resembles waxy fat. In addition to being produced by your liver, cholesterol may also be found in some foods including meat and dairy. To function effectively, your body requires some cholesterol. Cholesterol is essential for the body to function properly, as it is used to build cell membranes and make hormones, vitamin D, and bile acids that aid in digestion. However, you are more likely to develop coronary artery disease if you have too much cholesterol in your blood.
What Is Cholesterol?
Lipids, sometimes known as fats, include cholesterol and triglycerides. These fats are crucial for cell function, but when they accumulate in the blood, they can be dangerous. Atherosclerosis, a disorder marked by blocked, inflamed arteries, can occasionally result from them. If the arteries in your heart muscle are blocked, this might prevent your heart from functioning correctly.
What Are Different Types Of Cholesterol?
Since lipids (cholesterol and triglycerides) are hydrophobic (repel water), they cannot dissolve in the watery bloodstream on their own. However, when they are combined with proteins (Lipoprotein), they can be transported throughout the body in the bloodstream. There are several types of lipoproteins including low-density lipoprotein (LDL), high-density lipoprotein (HDL), and very low-density lipoprotein (VLDL). LDL is often called “bad” cholesterol, while HDL is known as “good” cholesterol, as it helps to remove excess cholesterol from the bloodstream.
What Is A Good Cholesterol Level? The Test
The procedure and method of the test, your age, gender, health history, and other factors may affect the test findings. Your test findings might not indicate an issue with you. Find out what your test findings signify by asking your healthcare practitioner. Results are presented in mg/dL or milligrams per deciliter. The ranges for adults’ total cholesterol are:
Total Cholesterol Good Levels
Total Cholesterol Levels
200 to 239 mg/dL
> 240 mg/dL
But, when it comes to good cholesterol (HDL), remember more is better.
Good Cholesterol / HDL Levels
Good Cholesterol Levels
Less than 40 mg/dL (1.0 mmol/L)
60 mg/dL (1.6 mmol/L) or above
Less than 50 mg/dL (1.3 mmol/L)
60 mg/dL (1.6 mmol/L) or above
What Influences Cholesterol Level? How To Reduce It?
What influences the levels of cholesterol? Cholesterol levels can be impacted by a variety of factors. You may do the following to decrease your cholesterol levels:
Diet – Your blood cholesterol level increases as a result of consuming foods high in saturated fat and cholesterol. The major issue is saturated fat, but food’s cholesterol content is important as well. Lowering your dietary intake of saturated fat can help decrease your blood cholesterol levels. Some meats, dairy products, chocolate, baked goods, deep-fried meals, and processed foods are among the foods that contain a lot of saturated fats.
Weight – Heart disease is more likely to occur if you are overweight. Additionally, weight often raises cholesterol. Your LDL (bad) cholesterol, total cholesterol, and triglyceride levels can all be decreased with weight loss. Additionally, a decrease in weight increases HDL (good cholesterol).
Smoking – Smoking cigarettes decreases your HDL (good) cholesterol. Your arteries can be cleared of harmful cholesterol thanks to HDL. Therefore, having decreased HDL might result in greater levels of harmful cholesterol.
Physical exercise – Heart disease is a risk factor for people who are not physically active. Regular exercise can increase HDL levels while lowering LDL. Additionally, it aids with weight loss. On most days, if not all of them, you should attempt to engage in 30 minutes of physical activity.
Controlling stress- Chronic stress has been linked to an increase in LDL cholesterol and a decrease in HDL cholesterol, according to research.
Factors Out Of Your Control That Affect Cholesterol Levels
Factors beyond your control can also affect cholesterol levels. Here are some of them:
Age and gender – Cholesterol levels increase with age. Women have lower total cholesterol levels than males do at the same age before menopause. Women’s LDL (bad) cholesterol levels often increase after menopause.
Heredity – How much cholesterol your body produces is partially influenced by your genes. A family history of high blood cholesterol may exist.
Race – Racial groups may be more susceptible to elevated blood cholesterol. For instance, compared to white people, African Americans often have greater levels of HDL and LDL cholesterol.
In conclusion, cholesterol levels are influenced by a variety of factors, including diet, weight, smoking, physical exercise, and stress. While some of these factors can be controlled, others are beyond our control, such as age, gender, heredity, and race. Understanding the factors that impact our cholesterol levels is important for maintaining heart health and preventing cardiovascular disease. Regular cholesterol testing and consultation with a healthcare practitioner can help individuals make informed decisions about their diet, exercise, and lifestyle to manage their cholesterol levels and reduce their risk of heart disease.